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Canadian Company Acquires City-Based PurePenn

By Staff Reports
The Tube City Almanac
December 15, 2020
Posted in: McKeesport and Region News

A Canadian company that specializes in medical marijuana has completed its acquisition of McKeesport-based PurePenn.

Trulieve Cannabis Corp., which has its U.S. offices in Quincy, Fla., near Tallahassese, also recently acquired the parent company of Solevo Wellness, a medical marijuana dispensary.

PurePenn began operations in late 2017 in the Industrial Center of McKeesport, the RIDC-operated industrial park on part of the former U.S. Steel National Plant property.

The company, which grows cannabis plants and extracts chemicals from them for medicinal purposes, is currently completing construction of a 90,000-square-foot production facility expected to begin operations in early 2021.

In a prepared statement, Kim Rivers, Trulieve chief executive officer, called PurePenn and Solevo “proven and reputable operators” and said the acquisitions would strengthen the company’s presence in the Northeastern United States.

Trulieve went public in 2018 and its stock is currently listed on the Canadian securities exchange. It currently trades at just under $40 per share Canadian, or about $31 in U.S. currency. The first medical marijuana company in Florida, it cultivates and processes its own cannabis plants and extracts in that state.

According to the company’s website, Trulieve has more than 130 medical marijuana dispensaries in California, Connecticut, Massachusetts and Florida.

Solevo has three dispensaries in the Pittsburgh area, including locations in Squirrel Hill, Cranberry Twp., Butler County, and South Strabane Twp., Washington County, that serve patients who have serious medical conditions. PurePenn does not have any dispensaries of its own, but its products were distributed through Solevo.

A Trulieve spokesperson put the value of the PurePenn and Solevo purchases at $66 million, including $29 million in cash and 1.78 million shares of Trulieve.

“We look forward to joining the Trulieve team,” said Gabe Perlow, chief executive officer of PurePenn, who co-founded the company along with McKeesport native Ray Boyer and California cannabis entrepreneur Jordan Lams.

“We are very proud of the cultivation and processing business we established and believe Trulieve places PurePenn in a great position to scale up our operations to meet the wholesale demand in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania,” Perlow said in a prepared statement.

Rivers thanked McKeesport-area leaders, including Mayor Michael Cherepko, state Sen. Jim Brewster, state Rep. Austin Davis and county Executive Rich Fitzgerald, for their support of PurePenn and the Trulieve acquisition.

“We look forward to serving patients in the Pennsylvania market, one of the most attractive medical marijuana markets in the United States,” she said.

Originally published December 15, 2020.

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